Trusts, estates, partnerships, corporations and LLCs are now expressly covered by the ATF’s regulations covering machine guns, destructive devices, sound suppressors, short-barreled rifles and shotguns and any other weapons that would not be considered a traditional pistol or rifle. National Firearms Act, 26 U.S.C Chapter 53 (the “NFA”). The ATF laws can be found at https://www.atf.gov/rules-and-regulations/laws-alcohol-tobacco-firearms-and-explosives; and the new regulations can be found at https://www.atf.gov/file/100896/download.
Rule 41F becomes effective July 13, 2016 and requires the disclosure of responsible persons and the trust or other controlling documents. Specifically, a responsible person must complete ATF Form 5320.23 and submit it to ATF with 2×2-inch photographs and FBI FD-258 fingerprint cards. A background check will be performed by the NFA and notice is given to the chief law enforcement officer of the jurisdiction where the firearms will be maintained. Generally, it is unlawful for a an alien admitted to the U.S.A. under a nonimmigrant visa to ship or possess a firearm. The legal consequences of not complying with the NFA include confiscation of the firearms involved, fines of up to $250,000 and is considered an accidental felony with up to 10 years in prison.
Needless to say, trusts, estates and other entities possessing or controlling covered firearms should: (1) be aware of the new Rule 41F registration requirements; or (2) consider creating or modifying their controlling documents in light of the new rules. If you have questions whether or how the new rules apply to you, do not hesitate to give us a call.